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Kia Launches New E-FOREST Factory for PBV Production

During the 2020 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Kia Corp and the Hyundai Motor Group (HMG) surprised the world with a new form of automobile. Becoming a large part of the companies’ plans going forward, purpose-built vehicles (PBVs) are going to be the new, big change in the auto industry. Like standard vehicles, a PBV can get people from one place to another, but the interior of the vehicle is designed with an exact purpose in mind. To illustrate this, the automakers presented a video at the 2022 CES demonstrating the variety of PBVs that may one day populate roadways or even cities. In May 2022, Kia Corp announced that it will be establishing an all-new, high-tech smart manufacturing facility dedicated to producing electric PBVs, called “E-FOREST”.

“This dedicated PBV facility is one of the major pillars of our Plan S strategy as Kia seeks to claim the top position in the global PBV market…We will initially explore new markets with derivative PBV models, then gradually expand our presence in global markets with dedicated PBV models featuring autonomous driving technologies.” – Ho Sung Song, President and CEO of Kia Corporation

Able to build 100,000 PBVs a year, with the possibility of increasing production to 150,000 units annually, Kia Corp has big plans for this new production hub, located within Kia’s existing Hwaseong manufacturing site in Korea. Construction of the plant is slated to start during the first half of 2023, with production for commercial PBVs by 2025. In March, during the Kia 2030 2022 CEO Investor Day, the automaker shared business plans expanding on their Plan S Strategy, a framework to become a leading automaker in the world of electric vehicles (EVs) and battery-electric vehicles (BEVs). These plans are already underway, with Kia intending to expand the lineup with 14 BEV models by 2027, launching at least two BEVs per year between 2023 and 2027.

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Kia Rio S Wins Vincentric 2022 Best Fleet Value in America Award

The Kia Corp lineup is very large, and still growing with the addition of electric vehicles (EVs) and battery-electric vehicles (BEVs). Because of the large selection, it can be easy for consumers to forget the very affordable and classy subcompact car, the Kia Rio. Now in its 2022 model year, the Kia Rio continues to shine and receive awards. We touched on this shortly last week with all the current awards Kia Corp is winning for its lineup in 2022, the Kia Rio had its own win with the 2022 Vincentric Best Fleet Value in America™ Awards. We think the Rio deserves some more spotlight, and we’re glad to see it happening. Starting at $16,250 (plus destination fee), the Kia Rio keeps its value for years to come.

“The Kia Rio outperformed eight competitor trims to earn this first-time win for Best Fleet Value Subcompact Hatchback…The Rio demonstrated its strong fleet value by having both the lowest maintenance costs and the lowest repair costs in its class.” – David Wurster, Vincentric President

If the name “Vincentric” is unknown, here’s a little summary. An organization trusted by automakers for its analysis and careful collection of data, knowledge, and insight into the auto market and new vehicles every year, Vincentric is a great source for consumers in the market to purchase a new vehicle. Able to provide consumers with all the data needed to make an informed decision, one thing that the  Vincentric Best Fleet Value in America™ Awards focuses on is the is the resale value of a vehicle years after purchase. Will the vehicle be worth anything? And how close to the original starting price will be retained by the vehicle?

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Consecutive Winnings for Kia Vehicles in May 2022

Every year, automotive journalists and publications review vehicles, have competitions, conduct studies, put together “Best of” lists, every way one can think of to test the quality of an automobile. A lot of awards shows and competitions take place in the spring, and this year, it’s like a wildfire. Every week, there seems to be another win for an automaker or model. This time, it’s Kia Corp, with three winnings reported in three days. The awards come from U.S. News & World Report for the Kia EV6, Vincentric for the Kia Rio, and the Hispanic Motor Press for the Kia Carnival MPV. We can already see the gold medals.

U.S. News & World Report recently put together its list of “Best Hybrid and Electric Cars”. Each electric vehicle (EV) that made the list was analyzed based on its overall score (according to U.S. News reviews), starting price, Level 2 charging rate, EPA fuel economy, and range estimates. The winners had the best combination of quality, value, and efficiency in their segment. With orders rising 49-percent in its second month in showrooms, a new Kia EV was definitely on the list, winning out over dozens of competitors. This earned the EV the title of Best Electric Vehicle, the Kia EV6.

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